Last time Kanye West sat down with Zane Lowe, he had a lot to say about the obstacles he faced trying to break into the fashion world. Following the triumphant launch of his Yeezy Boost shoe and Adidas fashion line, West got really emotional with Lowe in another lengthy conversation.
Listening to one of the most prolific, creative artists of our generation talk about all the doors that were slammed in his face as he tried to pursue this dream makes me tear up. He may have his flaws, but Kanye is offering an insight into the petrified hierarchies of creative fields that most people won’t even bother addressing. Not only that, but despite all the backlash he continually faces, West keeps fighting for his right to create. “No one man should have all that power, everyone should have it,” he quips, self-quoting a line from his own song “Power” from off My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy. He even goes so far as to apologize for the high price point of his line, and speaks further on that point, expounding the same idea contained in his Yeezus track “New Slaves.”
“Exclusivity is the new N-word,” he says. “That is the new N-word. Nothing should be exclusive! Everyone should have an opportunity to drink from the same fountain.” At one point, Kanye even breaks down, overcome with emotion when discussing the death of fashion professor Louise Wilson during the interview. But he does segue from fashion for a few minutes to discuss shooting the “Blessings” video with Big Sean and Drake, and implies that Drake is the hottest rapper in the game. He says his new album is “a joyful noise unto the Lord” and that “it is still the struggle, but the beauty from the struggle.”
The interview is intriguing to watch, because we get to see the through-line of Kanye’s philosophy extending from music into his new pursuits in fashion. Watch it below.